Leaders play a key role in the level of engagement in organizations.
So what is one of the key factors in achieving engagement in your work environment ?
Let’s look at this another way. What is probably the single most effective way to have staff ‘turn off’, loose interest, even mentally to ‘check out’ ?
“They don’t care about us.” is a statement which is heard, unfortunately, too often. Usually, this is an indication that the team, the business unit, the department, the division – even the organization as a whole is operating in a mildly dysfunctional state. Certainly, levels of engagement will be low.
This is basic. We’ve moved so far past the attitude of people being here ‘to do their job’. Of course, they are but this is such a ‘superficial’ statement and has no connection with motivation – and getting the very best out of people.
‘Show that you care’ is a simple but powerful concept. But what does ‘care’ mean ?
‘Care’ is an emotion, a feeling which for it to be effective, has to be conveyed to those for whom we have that emotion, that ‘caring’.
“Graham, I just care about results !”
Well, here’s a simple way to get results:
Show that you care about the people you work with, those around you and the people who come into your sphere of influence.
Care about their commitment, the effort they make, care that they have come to work today, show that you care about the pressure they may be experiencing, care when they’re not well, or their children or partner isn’t well, care that they’re working at the hardest level you’ve seen from them before.
You can even show you care by a smile, a genuine warm smile.
And there’s a word in what I’ve just said that underlies all I’m saying about caring. That word ? Genuine.
They’ll know if it’s not genuine. And then you’ve lost any semblance of real connection.
“Aaaahh, he’s just saying that.”
I firmly believe that ‘genuine’ and ‘caring’ are at the core of our values as leaders – or at least they should be. We know that all effective leaders must be credible. Genuine is an integral part of being credible.
How can you be a leader if you aren’t genuine ?
And how can you lead if you don’t care ?
So here’s my challenge to you today – and every day. Look for ways, even subtly, to show that you care.
And watch the engagement level – and the results – grow.
The Leadership Challenge